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Monday, July 4, 2016


Foul smell keeps visitors off public park toilets in Muscat!!!

By Yahya al Salmani — MUSCAT: July 3: Nappies and plastic strewn all around. And foul smell that makes you go for your handkerchief. This is the state of affairs of many toilets in the public parks across Muscat governorate. 

Many park-goers have complained about the condition of the toilets, with some pointing at the lack of maintenance. Visitors prefer to keep off toilets because of the lack of hygiene, resulting in an offensive odour. While some ‘careless visitors’ have been blamed for the mess, it also reflects on the authorities’ inability to ensure the toilets are clean and they pose no health hazard to its users. It’s time they showed more concern because mostly children and the aged people use these toilets.

A visitor to a park near Al Ghubra beach was aghast at the sight that greeted her. “I just can’t describe the scene (at the toilet). Children’s diapers and plastic bags strewn all around. I could not understand what was happening. Why do visitors do this? They should bear in mind that it’s a place used by all,” said the woman.

Speaking to Observer, she sought to know what the authorities have been doing. “The park is located close to a residential area. After what I saw, I don’t think I will come back (to the park) again with my children,” she said.

The foul smell, besides putting off the park-goers, could cause diseases to the toilet users.

Saif Ambosaidi (pictured), who came to Muscat from Nizwa with his family, told Observer: “It’s a shame many of our parks do not have toilets or a café. This matter should be resolved as soon as possible by the authorities,” he said.

Here are some questions that begs for answers: what is the reason for lack of health controls on parks? Do the authorities review awareness programmes to reduce health/ environment risks? Why does the government allocate ‘board money’ for recreation projects and then disregard them?

On the other hand, there are many public parks (Al Authaiba, Madinat Sultan Qaboos and Al Amerat), which do not include facilities such as toilets or coffee shops, said some visitors.

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